The best Shudder movies are a varied bunch. The newish Netflix for scare fans has taken a few years to build up a solid foundation, but were now at the point where Shudder is absolutely worth a monthly subscription in fact, it's essential for any horror movie fan. But scrolling through the home page can feel overwhelming and, because this is horror, there are some rather disappointing offerings even if the poster does look neon and cool. No, a puntastic name doesnt always guarantee fun times yes, were looking at you Blood Vessel. Thankfully there are plenty of gems and weve waded through the oozing swamp so you dont have to.
The addition of Zoom horror Host last year has really upped the caliber of Shudders offerings. There are some brilliant Shudder exclusives too and, in an age of VOD horror, there are plenty of creepy new additions which might not have found a home otherwise. From terrifying found footage and haunted board games to Indonesian frightmares and modern horror classics, Shudder has it all. Well try and avoid the obvious additions here too. You are probably scare-savvy enough to know to watch Audition.So, whether you want to rinse your free trial or just make sure youve got a full watch list, here are the best horror Shudder movies available right now.
The terrifying jewel in Shudders creepy crown. Host isnt the first horror movie set on a computer screen, but it is the first movie filmed over Zoom that devastatingly pits our learned pandemic behaviors against ourselves. When Haley, Jemma, and friends settle down for a seance instead of a dreaded Zoom quiz, were subjected to one of the most terrifying hours in modern horror history.
Things that go bump in the night dont come much scarier than this as an unknown force joins the call and each individual Zoom square plays, well, host to our own worst nightmares. Cleverly manipulating every trick in the tech book, including one exceptional use of a moving Zoom background, director Rob Savage has crafted a scary masterpiece. Its no coincidence that Savage and writers Gemma Hurley and Jed Shepherd have been snapped up by Blumhouse with a three-picture deal. Be afraid. Be very afriad.
Its not easy being a streamer. Youve constantly got to be online, incessantly making content to stay relevant, and even come up with unique merchandise. This is also the case for Max, an exorcist who streams demonic possessions live to his millions of adoring fans. Except he doesnt, because its all fake. That is, until it isnt.
The Cleansing Hour is a surprisingly inventive take on the possession genre with some brilliant scares. Yes, you know things are going to turn but that doesnt stop this being a deftly executed pun intended demon flick. With some seriously crunchy body horror and surprisingly earnest performances, The Cleansing Hour might not be worthy of Father Karras but it certainly makes for brilliant Holy Water-drenched fun.
Truthfully, the joy of the zombie-filled One Cut of the Dead lies in knowing as little about it as possible so youll need to just trust us when we say its brilliant, inspired, funny, and heartfelt. Given that so much of your enjoyment depends on you not reading anything more about it (other than this purposefully vague list entry), we ask you to stay away from YouTube and IMDb and just watch.
Trust us when we say you have to stick with it. As frustrating as this reads, and as you might find the start, the pay off is real. One Cut of the Dead is a horror indie darling for very good reason.
What if the original Jumanji... but horror? Well Beyond the Gates is the answer to this, admittedly, very specific question but as pleasingly high concept horror goes, this is gory joy. When two brothers discover a VHS board game as they clear their missing fathers video store, they discover the real reason behind their dads disappearance.
Horror legend Barbara Crampton stars as the ominous VHS host who steers players through the dastardly table top experience and hams it up happily. The real world manifestations of the board game are too fun to spoil but its important to note this is played for laughs rather than all out scares. Just make sure youve finished your dinner before the blood starts to flow.
It Follows might fall into the slightly too obvious category, but theres a reason this is on our list of the best horror movies of all time. In the wrong hand, this concept would have been played for laughs but the sexually transmitted curse at work is true nightmare fuel. Nothing can prepare you for the relentless forces pursuing Jay and her friends after she has a one-night stand with someone intentionally passing the curse on.
Disasterpieces atmospheric score feels like its dripping icy water down the back of your neck and thats before some of the greatest scares of the 21st century arrive. Terrifying and expertly crafted, It Follows is a modern horror masterpiece that takes no prisoners. And youll never open doors in the same way ever again.
If youve missed the work of Indonesian director Joko Anwar, a Shudder subscription is the best way to catch up and Impetigore in particular is the perfect place to start. Far more than just a brilliant pun, this is a twisted folk horror as a young woman called Maya and her BFF Dini head into the woods to try and find out more about her past. What they find is, well, why this is Impetigore and not 'Im Secretly A Disney Princess'.
Anwar perfectly juggles true horror with the odd comedy moment to lighten the mood and Maya and Dinis relationship is true friendship goals. For more scares from Anwar, check out Satans Slaves which is also on Shudder and he wrote the ultra gruey Queen of Black Magic which has also just arrived.
Old people are lovely arent they? So sweet offering you cups of tea and biscuits Or, maybe... maybe theyre not. Maybe theyre just adults, willing to make a deal with the devil to get back what they want because they cant cope with the grief of losing their grandson. Yeah, that got dark quick, didnt it? Welcome to Anything For Jackson.
Director Justin G. Dyck has previously only been responsible for romcoms, meaning that this might be some kind of release valve for repressed horror creativity. If this is the case, its probably better its out of his system. Anything For Jackson is a brilliant descent into madness as a couple summon far more than they, quite literally, bargain for. Gory, violent, and really, really scary, this isnt one for the faint of heart.
If youre already afraid of the apparent domestic bliss of settling down with 2.4 children, Vivarium really isnt going to help. Imogen Poots and Jesse Eisenberg play a couple whose house hunt goes entirely pear-shaped when they are left abandoned in an inescapable identikit estate.
Forced to settle down, the pair are faced with a truly nightmarish future. Those who havent left the house in a year might relate a little too hard but this is a surreal and unnerving experience with an exceptionally dark heart. Its possible to know too much so there will be no spoilers here but an especially brilliant performance from Poots makes this a compelling, if strange, slow burner.
There are a selection of anthology horrors hiding on Shudders gore-splattered shelves but few have quite the same gleefully nasty sense of humor as The Mortuary Collection. Built effortlessly around a new starter getting a tour of a camply creepy funeral home, this collection of four short horror films is a slickly depraved affair with rotting tongue firmly in cheek.
Whether its the skewering of bro culture or a twisted take on the babysitter urban legend, this is a solid popcorn affair. One of the shorts doesnt quite hit home and errs a little into tastelessness but it wouldnt be a horror anthology without at least one dud. Thankfully the strength of the other stories and the slick creepy wrapping more than make up for the misstep. An excellent Friday night spooky treat.
Not to be confused with the Megan Fox flick of the same name, Rogue is the creature feature we all need and deserve. Even fourteen years on, Wolf Creek director Greg Mcleans toothy crocodile movie still has serious bite. Rogue stars Radha Mitchell as a tour guide steering a boat of unsuspecting tourists through an Australian national park and, of course, something in the water sees them as a floating buffet.
Embracing its scuzzy B-movie roots, Rogue serves up gleefully vindictive death with a sweaty outback tension. Without the over-the-top gloss of something like the Meg, theres a real sense of risk here as the tourists are whittled down. Oh, and if youre looking for more snappy shocks, The Pool is also on Shudder and follows a man who ends up trapped at the bottom of an empty swimming pool with a giant crocodile. Yes, its just as silly as it sounds.
Rape revenge movies are, quite rightly, a hard sell. Long the staple of exploitative male-led productions, this is a horror genre largely left in the past for good reason. Which is exactly why director Coralie Fargeats blood-drenched Revenge is a searing reclaiming of the concept. This is an oversaturated and stylised gory descent into madness and you will be here for every second of it.
Fargeats deft handling of the subject matter turns an exploitation movie on its head and turns it into something very different, all accompanied by a relentless synth score. Matilda Lutz is a violent force of nature and if youre not on the edge of your seat throughout, you might actually be doing horror movies wrong.
Youd be forgiven for thinking that The House of the Devil looks like something you accidentally recorded in the middle of the night on a long play VHS. Ti Wests stylish 70s throwback is a grainy homage to horrors of decades gone by but still manages to deliver an exercise in unbearable tension. When Samantha takes a babysitting job at a remote house that, lets face it, were all screaming for her not to accept, she discovers something much more sinister is at work.
Theres a stack of slow burn long shots and atmospheric empty silences here but the pay-off is worth the wait. Back in 2009 this was a serious change of pace for a decade long obsessed with Saw sequels and noughties nastiness but still packs a bloodstained punch.
Horror films should have taught us enough by now. If you get together with a group of friends, dont go online, find a chant that summons vengeful spirits, and then say it out loud. But regardless, thats exactly what Evan does in director Elle Callahans supernatural horror, and yes, he and his friends absolutely face the consequences of his actions. Ooops.
Head Count isnt an all-out grue fest or quite as tension-inducing as It Follows but this is an assured and unnerving experience. Theres a refreshing dismissal of the usual disposable characters too, making this a far more considered and riskier undertaking. And get your speakers or headphones cranked up, you wont want to miss the disturbing sound on offer.
The very presence of The Beach House in this feature means that when Emily and Randall head to the coast for a much-needed break, they dont get the holiday they deserve. This is an odd slow burn affair from first time director Jeffrey A. Brown but delivers an intense cosmic horror dread. It turns out that you dont need the threat of a giant shark to make the ocean ominous and terrifying.
Its perhaps a little too long but the tone is fascinating and theres a moment of seriously disgusting body horror that even the strongest of stomachs might find churnworthy. Another one not to eat dinner with then but The Beach House is an intriguing watch nonetheless that might lurk in your brain long after the credits roll.
The success of the Blair Witch Project and Paranormal Activity often fools filmmakers into thinking that found footage is easy. Its not. Found footage needs to be far more than just a shaky camera and some screams. Which is why the little-known Hell House LLC is so good. Yes, theres running and screaming as a group of friends try to build the ultimate haunt attraction in a dilapidated hotel, but theres also the quiet moments; shots of empty corridors gazes down ominous basement stairs
Hell House LLCs schtick isnt new - coulrophobes beware - but the scares are surprisingly effective. A documentary-style is a perfect fit to uncover the truth of what happened on Hell Houses opening night and, as ever, theres always something so compelling about safe scares turning very real. A warning though, the sequels arent nearly as good.
Want more streaming options? Then be sure to check out the best Netflix movies available right now.
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Reviewed and Recommended by Erik Baquero